INVITATIONAL AGREEMENT

Between

NORTHERN MICHIGAN UNIVERSITY and GREEK LETTER SOCIAL ORGANIZATIONS

PREAMBLE

Greek letter social fraternities and sororities are student organizations that promote high standards of scholarship, leadership, and community service for their members.  They also contribute to their members’ personal growth morally, socially, and intellectually.  Greek letter social organizations are characterized by a tradition of adherence to their founding principles and ideals.  Loyalty to one another, mutual support for the achievement of their members, and the formulation of enduring friendships are characteristic of members of these unique social units.

Greek life is an important component of student life at Northern Michigan University.  The Greek system promotes the development of a wide variety of academic, leadership, personal, and social skills for its members.  Greek organizations contribute to the attractiveness of the University to prospective students and alumni.  Finally, Greeks traditionally have a positive impact on the campus and in the surrounding communities through their social, academic, and service achievements.  Northern Michigan University recognizes these contributions and allocates staff time and resources for maintaining and strengthening Greek organizations.  Because of the importance of the Greek system and because of the unique circumstances under which it operates, the following conditions which define the relationship between Northern Michigan University and Greek organizations have been developed.  This Invitational Agreement explains the relationship between Greek organizations and Northern Michigan University.

Note:  This document will be reviewed and appropriate revisions will be made in March of every year.  A review committee consisting of the Presidents of each Greek Chapter, Presidents and Advisers of Greek governing organizations, the Dean of Students, the Director of the Center for Student Enrichment, and the Associate Provost for Student Services and Enrollment (ex-officio) will be convened.  Recommended revisions will be approved by the Associate Provost for Student Services & Enrollment.

INTRODUCTION

Greek letter social sororities and fraternities seeking to establish chapters at Northern Michigan University are invited to do so.  The invitation to colonize will be extended by the Dean of Students.  Once a colony or chapter is established, its continuance is based on compliance with the provisions of this Invitational Agreement.  Greek organizations that are not members of national fraternities and sororities must also abide by this Invitational Agreement.

I.        RECOGNITION OF GREEK ORGANIZATIONS

In order to be recognized as a Greek organization and be eligible for the benefits and services accorded that status, it will be necessary for a prospective fraternity or sorority to:

A.   write a petition (application available from the Greek governing council/s) to be recognized, which will have to be approved by the Greek Council.

B.   be formally invited to campus by the Dean of Students (if a National organization), after the Dean has received a positive recommendation from the Greek Council.  Prospective sororities will first petition the Panhellenic Council.  The Panhellenic Council will pass its recommendation on to the Greek Council.  Prospective fraternities will petition the Greek Council directly.

C.   define the purpose of the organization in a manner that distinguishes it as a Greek organization (if it is a prospective local social fraternity or sorority).

D.   agree to abide by the terms and conditions outlined in this statement.

II.       GOVERNANCE OF GREEK ORGANIZATIONS

Effective self-governance is critical to the growth and well-being of the Greek system and the members therein.  Fraternities and sororities are expected to:

A.   participate in the appropriate Greek governing bodies (Greek Council and Panhellenic Council.  Fraternities and sororities will ensure that Greek governing body members are in good standing as defined by their by-laws.

B.   accept and abide by National Interfraternity Conference and National Panhellenic Conference guidelines, if applicable.

III.      RECRUITMENT OF NEW MEMBERS

Attracting, selecting, and orienting new members are crucial activities for Greek organizations.  Similarly, this process requires that Greek organizations show a sincere concern for the general well-being of their prospective new members.  In order to make the recruitment process a positive experience for all concerned, it will be necessary for Greek organizations to:

A.   participate in a joint recruitment effort during the fall semester if they are a sorority and to conduct open recruitment in an honorable and respectful manner if they are a fraternity.

B.   register each new chapter recruit/associate/new member with the Center for Student Enrichment within 10 days of his/her association (registration form available online or by hard copy).

1)    Staff in the Center for Student Enrichment will send a letter to new chapter recruits/associates/new members congratulating them on their affiliation, noting the opportunities they’ll have for growth, along with information on hazing/alcohol policies.  Fraternities and sororities will ensure that recruits/associates/new members are providing their current mailing address.

C.   verify that all pledges/associates have a minimum 2.25 cumulative grade point average before initiation.  (Verification will be provided by Northern Michigan University upon receipt of a grade release form and can be taken from high school transcripts or college records.)

D.   abide by all rules and regulations established by the National Interfraternity Conference (www.nicindy.org) or the National Panhellenic Conference (www.npcwomen.org) pertaining to the recruitment/pledging process, including those which govern the use of alcohol and those which prohibit hazing (regardless of affiliation with these national organizations).

IV.     RESPONSIBLE USE OF ALCOHOLIC BEVERAGES

Greek organizations are in a very vulnerable position concerning misuse and accompanying liability associated with the consumption of alcohol.  Conversely, Greeks also have significant opportunities to promote responsible use of alcohol and to encourage alternative activities.  Greek organizations will be expected to:

A.   abide by all institutional, state, local, and FIPG regulations and policies (www.fipg.org) regarding the possession, consumption, sale, and distribution of alcoholic beverages on their premises or at any entertainment or function given in the name of or for the benefit of the fraternity or sorority.

B.   require new recruits/associates/new members to attend a Risk Management workshop series which will include alcohol related issues, hazing issues, dating miscommunication and violence concerns, and sexual health issues.  (These workshops will be provided by the Health Promotion Office upon request.) 

C.   Call upon the Center for Student Enrichment/Health Promotion Office if additional assistance or workshops are needed.

V.      ACCEPTABLE CONDUCT

The conduct of Greek members reflects on the individual, their chapters, and the Greek system as a whole.  Acting responsibly requires a commitment from each Greek organization and each member of a chapter.

A.   To ensure that Greeks conduct themselves in a manner that is beneficial to themselves, Northern Michigan University, and the surrounding community, they will be expected to:

1)    abide by all national, state, and local laws and regulations.

2)    abide by the regulations contained in the Northern Michigan University Student Code and the Northern Michigan University Ordinances.

3)    abide by the guidelines and regulations of the National Interfraternity Conference (fraternities), and the National Panhellenic Conference (sororities), the Greek governing council/s, and the terms and conditions of this statement.

4)    absolutely refrain from hazing.  (Hazing is defined in the University Policy on Hazing [www.nmu.edu/www-sam/humanres/AdminPoliciesMan/Hazing.htm].)

B.   Individual members of Greek organizations who are in violation of any University statutes, rules, or regulations will be subject to the process and penalties outlined in the Student Code.

C.   Greek organizations whose members are in violation of University statutes, rules, or regulations or who fail to abide by the guidelines and regulations of the National Interfraternity Conference (fraternities), the National Panhellenic Conference (sororities), the FIPG policy, or the terms and conditions of the Greek Invitational Agreement, regardless of whether the individuals are identified, will be subject to the process and penalties of the Greek Judicial System.

1)    The Greek Judicial System will be comprised of the following entities:

a)    the Greek Judiciary Committee, which will be composed of one member from each active chapter.  Training will be provided as needed by the staff in the Dean of Students Office. 

b)   the Dean of Students or his/her designee.

c)    the Director of the Center for Student Enrichment or his/her designee.

2)    The judicial process for Greek organizations will be as follows:

a)    a complaint is registered with the Dean of Students Office and/or the Center for Student Enrichment by the City of Marquette, NMU Public Safety, NMU faculty, staff, or students, or by any other entity.

b)   the Dean of Students and the Director of the Center for Student Enrichment will make a determination as to the seriousness of the alleged incident (a general guideline will be incidents where suspension of activities or removal of a chapter is a potential outcome).

1.    for incidents deemed to be of a less serious nature:

a.    the adviser to the Greek Council (termed “Greek Adviser”) meets with representatives from the defendant chapter.

b.   if the defendant chapter accepts responsibility for the alleged incident, an appropriate sanction is levied.

c.    if the defendant chapter denies responsibility for the alleged incident, the case is referred to the Greek Judiciary Committee, with the representative from the defendant chapter recused.  The Greek Judiciary Committee will conduct a hearing in the process used by the All Student Judiciary.  When a verdict is determined and the charges are upheld, an appropriate sanction will be determined.  The Greek Judiciary Committee will not have the authority to invoke a Suspension of Activities or Removal of a Chapter.

d.   if the Greek Judiciary Committee is unable to reach a verdict, the case will be referred to the Dean of Students (or designee) and the Director of the Center for Student Enrichment (or designee) for a hearing.

2.    for incidents deemed to be of a more serious nature:

a.    the Dean of Students or his/her designate will investigate the alleged incident.

b.   at the conclusion of the investigation if the alleged incident is determined to have occurred, the Dean of Students or his/her designate in conjunction with the Director of the Center for Student Enrichment (or designate) will levy an appropriate sanction.

D.   Greek organizations whose members are in violation of University rules or regulations may be subjected to one or more penalties implemented by the Dean of Students.  Penalties include but are not restricted to:

1)    Probation.  Probation is a period during which additional incidents of unacceptable behavior are dealt with much more severely than they would be otherwise.

2)    Special Conditions.  Special conditions prescribe a certain course of activity or behavior that must occur.  Special conditions can be sanctions in and of themselves or they can be developed in conjunction with other sanctions.

3)    Loss of Privileges.  Privileges granted to Greek organizations and/or student organizations are suspended for an indefinite period of time that will be determined by the severity of an offense and the conditions surrounding it.

4)    Suspension of Activities.  A chapter is prohibited from sponsoring or participating in activities.  This penalty is invoked when violations are particularly serious or of a repeated nature.

5)    Removal of a Chapter.  A chapter is disbanded and must cease operations.  This penalty is applied when the violations are severe, of a repeated nature, or constitute a threat to the well-being of members of the University community.

Appeals for leniency on decisions made by the Dean of Students can be made to the Associate Provost for Student Services and Enrollment.

VI.     MAINTAINING GOOD STANDING

Good standing must be maintained in order for Greek organizations to participate in recruitment and other Greek sponsored activities.  Greek organizations are able to maintain this status by:

A.   registering annually as a student organization.

B.   participating in the appropriate Greek governing bodies.

C.   submitting a roster of active members and new recruits/associates/new members by the end of the fourth week of both fall and winter semesters.

D.   registering each new chapter recruit/associate/new member within 10 days of this/her association.

E.   submitting a grade point report to the Center for Student Enrichment for the preceding semester, by the end of the fourth week of both the fall and winter semesters.

F.   abiding by the terms and conditions outlined in the Invitational Agreement.

VII.     UNIVERSITY ASSISTANCE

Northern Michigan University is committed to the development of a vital, positive Greek community.  In order to assist with this development, the University will:

A.   provide staff advisers to the Greek governing organizations and assist in identifying individual chapters with faculty/staff advisers, upon request.

B.   provide office space for Greek governing council/s.

C.   compile and provide grade point information for chapters, national organizations, and campus competitions.

D.   serve as a resource and as a contact for Greek alumni.

E.   meet with representatives from national Greek organizations and advise them in implementing suggested improvements for their chapters on campus.

F.   assist Greek organizations in addressing campus community issues.

G.   conduct workshops on a variety of topics as requested or as needs are identified.

H.   include Greek organizations in recognition activities for leadership, scholarship, and community service.

I.     include Greeks in NMU publications and promotions, when it is appropriate to do so.

J.    provide staff to consult with individual Greek organizations by request.

K.   provide Greek organizations with the services and programs that are made available to all registered student organizations.

L.    acknowledge chapters who have achieved a chapter GPA of 3.0 or higher.

M.   participate in and help co-sponsor (with the Greek governing council/s) efforts to promote the positive aspects of Greek life. 

 

Revised by Greek Task Force/No Revisions Required

(Center for Student Enrichment/Greek Adviser/Dean of Students/Chapter Representatives/Greek Council Representatives)

March 2013